Backyard weddings never looked this good!

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In the last post I wrote that having a backyard wedding could be one way to save quite a bit of money but received a few comments that the idea of a having a wedding in someone’s backyard didn’t actually conjure up exciting images so I decided to do a blog post showing just how magical a backyard wedding can be.

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The Wedding Budget!

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For the couple on a tight budget!

Now that you and your fiancé have decided on your vision and the most important aspects of the wedding, the next step is the budget. A realistic budget that will allow you to choose most of the must-haves for your special day. In order to do this well you should know approximately what things cost in your area. You don’t want to spend time creating a budget only to discover that flowers cost twice as much as you had hoped to spend, so do the research. When you have info on most of the costs, you can look at the available funds and figure out what kind of wedding you are going to have. If needed and possible, ask your parents if they are willing to help in some way – whether by paying for some aspect of the wedding or just adding funds to the budget. Have a discussion with them and share your wish-list so that they know the scale of the wedding (and also so that they don’t try to pressure you into having the wedding of their dreams!) With open communication, parents can tell you how much they were planning to contribute. If you want their help financially you’ll get much better results when you invite parents to participate and allowing them to state what they’re comfortable with. Show them your priority list and share your excitement about the wedding planning process, rather than just telling them what your dream wedding is going to cost or trying to guilt-trip them into contributing more than they can afford. Never compare what they are contributing to what the in-laws are! If you initially told your parents that you are paying for the wedding yourself but after a period of time expenses have piled up and you now need help, just be direct and ask whether the offer of financial assistance is still on the table. Just FYI – couples typically spend between $20,000 and $33,000 but, it is possible to spend less than $10,000 and still have a fabulous wedding.

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Planning your wedding – the most important decisions.

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When you have nothing other than “we want to get married”… which is of course the most important part, it has to feel pretty overwhelming! Just know that the first decisions are the hardest. As you go along everything will start to fall into place and it will get easier. If you decided on a long-ish engagement it will give you time to get everything done without any (or too much) panic. Continue reading Planning your wedding – the most important decisions.

I said YES!

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So…your partner proposed and you said… YES! and then reality hits you. HELP! Overwhelming details spinning through your mind furiously and you are wondering how you will actually pull this off followed by images of the dream wedding you have imagined maybe since you were a kid. If you and your partner decided on a long engagement you might not be panicking too much or if you are not surprised by the proposal and have secretly been planning under the radar, you have most likely thought about most of the details by now and are ready to jump into action. Continue reading I said YES!

Not your every day backyard wedding.

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Surrounded by the lush mountains of Malibu is the Malibu Canyon Ranch; a stunning estate famous for it’s European castle like tower. With white horses and white oak trees you will never believe that this beautiful gem is only 40 minutes from Beverly Hills and 10 minutes from Paradise Cove Beach.

This venue was also the location for a fabulous wedding that I had the honor of catering and planning. Continue reading Not your every day backyard wedding.

Infusions, Champagne Bar and Wedding Trends.

This blog is inspired by research I have been doing for a couple  who is so much fun to work with – a planner’s true ideal client! As we are going over the details for their wedding, their signature cocktail came up. As they are having pink-ish/blush accents in their bouquets and decor they wanted to carry that through to the signature champagne
cocktails as well which had us discussing what we would have to infuse their champagne with to get that effect. Continue reading Infusions, Champagne Bar and Wedding Trends.

Fun Pairings for Cocktails and Food Stations

Hamburger sliders and friesOne of the biggest challenges for any caterer or wedding/event planner is to find fun and unique ways to wow guests at an event so fish and chips with mini beersI have been looking around for inspiration for the next wedding we are both planning and catering and will share with you some fun beverage and appetizer pairings for cocktail hour and even for the main course that your guests will love! These appetizers are served a little differently than what we are used to seeing at events and this will work well whether you are having a formal black tie or casual backyard event. In fact imagine inviting your guests to a black tie wedding and then giving them fish and chips wrapped in paper with mini beer shots! So far we have had rave reviews.

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A Chuppah, Arbor or Arch?

chuppah rose colored and ligthsI have recently had inquiries about the difference between Chuppah’s Arches and Arbors so I thought it would be a good topic for a blog post as I am sure there are other couples asking the same questions.

The chuppah, like the one in the picture on the left is a tapestry attached to the tops of four poles. The word chuppah means covering or protection, and is intended as a roof or covering for the couple at their wedding. The “roof” consists of a cloth or sheet, sometimes a tallit which is a Jewish prayer shawl. The tallit could be stretched or supported over four poles, or manually held up by attendants to the ceremony. A chuppah symbolizes the home that the couple will build together. It is said that the couple’s ancestors are present at the chuppah ceremony.

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What is Your Wedding Style?

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What is your wedding or event style? When I first meet a couple I suggest that they close their eyes and envision what they want their wedding to look like as though it is the day of. To “look around” for details. I ask them to write down how they feel and how they “see” their surroundings and then we start a vision board using either Pinterest or an actual vision board or vision book. Once they find a venue we discuss how their vision compliments the venue, the challenges it may present and how we can overcome or modify their preferences.

If they envision a hotel or art gallery for the reception then the couple’s style probably leans more toward the elegant and/or modern. If they envision it in a barn, garden, beach or other outdoor space then they could lean more towards the rustic, country chic or casual style. As spring is here and summer is around the corner,  I thought it would be a good time for a blog about outdoor weddings and event styles.

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The “WOW” Factor.

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Message to the bride from the groom

How adorable is this unique way to send a note to your wife to be on your wedding day!

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Wedding Chair Cover

I recently searched the internet with a couple to find items that could add the WOW factor to their wedding without breaking the budget and found some great ideas. These days almost anything at an event can be dressed up that will literally leave your guests speechless.

One way of dressing up your venue is adding some swag to your ceremony reception chairs or even just to the chairs at the sweetheart table so they stand out from the rest. These two choices were the bride’s favorites. Once we had made the decision about the chairs we moved on to table settings.

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